Belfast Telegraph

Housing firm bids to expand south Belfast development

An artist’s impression of the latest phase of PWD Development’s Brooke Hall housing scheme in south Belfast
An artist’s impression of the latest phase of PWD Development’s Brooke Hall housing scheme in south Belfast
Ryan McAleer

By Ryan McAleer

A property firm headed by a well-known Belfast hospitality figure has launched a bid to significantly expand an upmarket housing development on the southern outskirts of the city.

PWD Developments, which was set up by Pat McCormack, has submitted an application to build 37 new houses on the Brooke Hall Wood development, just off the Saintfield Road at Cairnshill.

The bid includes 22 semi-detached and 12 detached homes, as well as three townhouses.

An application for nine of the homes was lodged with planners at Lisburn and Castlereagh City Council in early June.

However, last week the developer submitted the larger application for another 28 homes at the expanding residential site.

It marks phase four of the overall Brooke Hall development, which includes Brooke Hall Heights, Brooke Hall and Brooke Hall Mews.

Mr McCormack previously owned the popular Cafe Vaudeville nightspot on Arthur Street, which was sold to the English owned Revolution Bars Group for a figure believed to be around £2.5m.

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Although it has earned a reputation for producing upmarket housing developments in leafy suburbs across the greater Belfast area, PWD Developments, which also involves Manus and Julie McCormack, last bought the former First Trust Bank on the Upper Ormeau Road.

The former bank branch, which closed in 2017, went on the market with a guide price of £350,000.

Located opposite the Errigle and Pavilion bars, PWD is proposing to demolish the building and erect a new three-story residential building, with street level cafe and retail units. The bid is expected to be granted planning approval within weeks.

Set up in 2012, Stranmillis-based PWD Developments has built a reputation for producing homes in some of Northern Ireland's most sought after postcodes.

Recent developments include Pantridge Land in Hillsborough, Red Hall Lane in Belmont and Seapark Lane in Holywood.

PWD Development's plans for Brooke Hall join a list of significant residential projects earmarked for the Cairnshill and Knockbracken areas.

Two years ago, Fraser Houses was granted permission for 219 houses on lands in the Knockbracken Road. Last summer, the family-owned company, based in the Four Winds area of Belfast, launched another bid for 198 homes on the Ballymaconaghy Road.

In July, well-known Belfast property developer Kevin McKay launched his own bid for 139 homes on the Ballymaconaghy Road.

Mr McKay, who chairs the Benmore Group, has submitted the bid as Johncorp.

The proposal comprises 65 detached and 58 semi-detached houses, along with 16 apartments. Johncorp is also behind a bid to transform the 18-hole Mount Ober course at Ballymaconaghy Road into a nine-holer, with a new clubhouse.

Meanwhile, figures from the UK New House Building Council (NHBC) put the number of new homes registered in Northern Ireland in the second quarter of 2019 at 1,175.

The NHBC provides warranties on approximately 80% of all new homes built in the UK.

The figure is 33% down on the 1,754 homes registered with NHBC between April and June 2018.

The biggest fall was in Co Down, which saw the number of new builds halved from 629 in Q2 2018 to 311 this year.

Co Antrim and Co Londonderry also saw a sharp falls over the same period.

Armagh was the only county in Northern Ireland to record an increase, rising from 113 to 136.

Belfast Telegraph